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June 26, 2001
9:32 PM   Subscribe

'XIAMEN: A senior Beijing researcher on Taiwan affairs yesterday called for immediate measures to resist an ongoing bid by the island to promote its cultural independence..'. [More]
posted by Kino (11 comments total)

 
I have no idea what describing someone with just the term 'researcher' applies to in China: i imagine it's the equivalent of a government advisor (it goes on to mention he's 'director of the Beijing-based Cross-Straits Relations Research Centre' which sounds pretty government agency-ish). Is China gearing up to take action? Is their news agency pushing this out as a threat to the world, or just a show of policy and striength. Are they upping their efforts to build public hostility towards the fragile island for an impending military campaign?. The link to this story on Chinadailys front page states 'Taiwan on Dangerous Road: Independence attempts in whatever forms doomed'.
posted by Kino at 9:33 PM on June 26, 2001


This is an almost daily occurrence that some Chinese official or other makes a veiled threat against Taiwan. Tensions rise and fall but China is not going to invade anytime soon.
posted by lagado at 11:53 PM on June 26, 2001


This is an almost daily occurrence that some Chinese official or other makes a veiled threat against Taiwan. Tensions rise and fall but China is not going to invade anytime soon.

True. Though my belief in this commonly held truth tends to diminish when I see troops in full battle gear walking down Kuang Fu Rd. and hear Mirage 2000s flying overhead all through the night. I only seem to notice these things after some announcement from the mainland. Coming from a small town in Canada where the only men in uniform are at the legion its all a bit uncomfortable.
posted by cmacleod at 3:51 AM on June 27, 2001


Joe Lieberman suggested that they also crack down on porno videos and violent computer games.
posted by Postroad at 5:04 AM on June 27, 2001


Cultural deniability.
posted by clavdivs at 7:20 AM on June 27, 2001


This is all posturing. The only reason to read the China Daily is to keep up on the propaganda. Also, I don't believe that the Chinese government would actually need time to gear up public support against Taiwan, Japan, or Tibet. A large number of Chinese support action against these countries already.
posted by Stretch at 7:59 AM on June 27, 2001


Yeh, but isn't the 'genius' of a strong regime like the Chinese communist party partly to do with its talents to sustain a constant throth of their agenda fueled leadership propaganda to tweak underlying sensibilities instilled in the masses over the years and keep peoples thoughts how they want them - better to cash in what support they do have on an issue and try to win over any that they don't. Appealing to, whilst also dictating to, the people and working emotions into a frenzy seems to be what its all about. Especially if they're planning action that has the potential to piss off a percentage of their otherwise programmed and orderly people. 'We are good for you.. So good that you will obey and not question because you know that we know best. You will use your position of influence in the family/town to see that others obey too. You will go about your duties with honor and pride assured by us that you are acting in the interest of everybody. You will happily jump at the chance to die for our/your cause if need be'

CMcloud, my brother went out to Taiwan recently to teach (which is prob why i get so alarmed when i see these stories.. not to mention the fact it could lead to nuclear Armageddon :/) Do you feel safe out there? Is there a genuine heightened sense of unease amongst ordinary people this year? Or is everybody used to it and just put it out of there minds the way many westerners did during the cold war. Is it wise to even mention this and is it wise for you to be commenting? (Or would that be a little over-the-top?).
posted by Kino at 11:06 AM on June 27, 2001


Whoa. Where did all of that rhetoric come from? ;) China will not make foolish move in this game of strategy. After China witnessed what happened with Desert Storm, they realize that invading Taiwan is not a wise move at this point. More likely, they will wait...and wait... and seek another way in.

Why would one not feel safe "out there?" Kino, you seem to be approaching this somewhat strangely.
posted by Stretch at 11:34 AM on June 27, 2001


Kino, you seem to be approaching this somewhat strangely.

Yeah - I've been eating special 'consistency pills' Stretch. Least, that's what the guy said they were when i bought a job lot of them back in '69. They're really rather odd - Two years on and i seem to have more than i started with.. Weird thing is though, my birth certificate specifically states i'm not born until the mid-70's!.

Why would one not feel safe "out there?" Kino

Well, the fact that cabbage and V.D are the same word/different tone in Mandarin could lead to nasty situations whilst lazily embarking on the weekly shop! "Excuse me Madam.. Where is your V.D kept?".

Plus i heard that people out there wear out their car horns before their brakes!

After China witnessed what happened with Desert Storm, they realize that invading Taiwan is not a wise move at this point

Didn't stop old Slobbery MeMomsAVitch from wiping out a fair amount of his countries people though (and all the other Balkan border pushing). I imagine he knew that we'd take a dim view of that too. Then again, your right, this is infinitely more central to world stability so couldn't be compared to such relative trivialities from international security perspectives. I just felt like messing with Milosovich's name and needed a vehicle to do it. Can't wait till he ends up in the Hague and more than just his name gets re-arranged. Hopefully, the powers that be will find some way of serving true justice to him and all the other Balkan butchers (unlike Tihomir Blaskics easy treatment) sending them on a long, slippery slope to an Eichmann-esque end.
posted by Kino at 2:03 PM on June 27, 2001


Do you feel safe out there?

Not exactly but not due to the threat of war. I'm more at risk of being killed by a motorcylcle speeding on a sidewalk or the seemingly constant barrage of earthquakes or perhaps the deadly air.

... unease amongst ordinary people this year?

I don't know any ordinary people.

Nobody is overly concerned -- one lady I work with still remembers getting bombed during WWII and she says she still gets nervous when she hears some certain loud noise.

I think its a commonly held belief among the people that I hang with that there is no need for war to bring Taiwan under Chinas umbrella. Economics led by local business leaders is making this an eventuality. People in Taiwan are driven by money not by some nationalist ideology.
posted by cmacleod at 3:35 PM on June 27, 2001


Cheers CMacloud, interesting point about the economic factor. I have a hard time rationalizing how Hong-Kong can suddenly integrate back into being a part of China yet extremely capitalist and commercial, but they are and it is. I remember a kfuffle not to long ago where Australia was in a position that it more or less had to make a big decision to either trade with China or the US, such was the politics of the thing. I think in the end China won out for purely economic reasons on whatever commodities were involved.

there is no need for war to bring Taiwan under Chinas umbrella

It seems i don't have to buy a chemical toilet and a million tins of spam just yet then.
posted by Kino at 11:57 AM on June 29, 2001


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